Difference between RTGS, NEFT and IMPS

Snneha Lukaa August 4, 2019

Gone are the days when people used to visit banks for transferring money using demand draft or cheque. Technological advancements over the past decade combined with affordable internet access has tremendously increased the usage of digital payment gateways among Indians.Post demonetisation in late 2016, various government services and retail businesses have started accepting online payment for their services. Money transaction between business to business or an individual to business has become more secure, faster and efficient with minimal human efforts. Incremental growth in the number of online transactions in India during the last 5 year span clearly shows that people prefer electronic payment over conventional methods and are becoming comfortable using them.

In India, the most commonly used electronic payment methods are RTGS, NEFT and IMPS. NEFT and RTGS are payment settlement systems controlled by RBI (Reserve Bank of India), while IMPS is controlled by NPC (National Payment Corporation). Let’s cover each one in detail and discuss the key differences:


In RTGS (Real Time Gross Settlement), money gets transferred from sender to beneficiary account almost immediately or within 30 minutes maximum. Payments made vis RTGS are occur on order-by-order basis. The minimum transaction limit is 2 lakh rupees for transferring funds using RTGS. However, both the sender and beneficiary’s bank account need to have RTGS enabled.RTGS Key FeatureReal-time fund transfeFunds transferred using RTGS are irreversiblAmount: Rs. 2 lakhs (minimum) and Rs. 20 lakhs (maximumTransaction charges: Rs.30 (between Rs.2 lakh to Rs.5 lakh) and Rs.55 (above Rs.5 lakh) + GST (service chargesTimings: 8am to 4.30pm (Monday-Friday)9am to 12.30pm (Saturday). Closed on Sundays and public holidays.


With NEFT (National Electronic Funds Transfer), money gets transferred from the sender to beneficiary account in different batches using Deferred Net Settlement (DNS) system. Instructions are processed in 12 batches on weekdays between 8am to 8pm and 6 batches between 8am to 2pm on Saturdays. NEFT instructors can be scheduled in repetitive cycles and a generic personal savings bank account can be used initiated fund transfer instruction without any transaction charges.NEFT Key FeatureTakes 2 hours or more to transfer fundFunds are transferred using hourly batcheAmount: Rs. 1 (minimum) and Rs. 20 lakhs (maximumTransaction charges: No chargeTimings: 8am to 8pm (Monday-Friday)8am to 2pm (Saturday), Closed on Sundays and public holiday


With IMPS (Immediate Mobile Payment Service), money can be transferred from sender to receiver almost instantly, via mobile phones or an ATM. The IMPS service is available 24×7, 365 days, and is also more user-friendly and affordable compared to other payment transition modes. Additionally, a generic bank account can be used to initiate the fund transfer instructions.IMPS Key FeatureFunds are transferred immediatelAmount: Rs. 1 (minimum) and Rs. 2 lakhs (maximumTransaction charges: Rs. 5 + GST (service chargesTimings: 24 x 7 – 365 days a year

Online banking has made it highly convenient to transfer funds from one person’s account to another, thus eliminating the need for cheques and demand drafts. Considering the above types of transactions and their fees will help you make the right choice on which mode of bank payment suits your needs.

Snneha Lukaa

August 4, 2019

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